Your affiliate customers are the lifeline of your affiliate business.
Even if you’ve managed to join the highest paying affiliate programs, and you’re promoting the best quality products, if there are no people coming to your site, or if there are but no one is buying, your business won’t make it.
It is only a matter of time before everything comes crumbling down right in front of you.
So this doesn’t happen, it’s imperative to take good care of your customers.
One thing you should know about customers is that they want one thing: value.
In this article, you’ll find 15 effective ways on how to deliver more value to your affiliate customers.
Most of these are simple, no-nonsense tips that you should already have thought of, but many affiliates tend to overlook.
# 1 – Choose the right products to promote
The right products can attract the right customers—there is so much truth in this advice.
This is why, affiliate marketing experts always advise the beginners to take all the time to be able to choose the right products.
Now the hard part is determining what product is the right one? What does “right” even mean?
The right product fits the following descriptions:
- Related to your knowledge and expertise
- Related to your passion and interest
But take note that this is just for your part as the affiliate. All these things would help ensure that the product will work for you.
More importantly, the product should be right for your target customer.
Your product should be able to achieve the following:
- Be safe for use or consumption
- Last long enough to deliver what it’s supposed to do
- Provide the benefits that it was designed for
- Solve your customers’ problems and issues
- Make your customer’s life easier and more comfortable
Only when you’ve chosen such product that you’ll be able to give the value that your customers are looking for.
# 2 – Use the products before promoting
One of the most common mistakes that newbie affiliates make is to promote a product they know nothing about.
Sure, you’ve read the product description, and you’ve chosen a product based on profitability, your knowledge and your interest.
But this does not make you automatically an expert about the product until you have tried it yourself.
It’s always a good idea to try using the product before you promote it.
This will allow you to write an extensive review about the product, instead of just blatantly advertising it to your customers.
Instead of simply telling them “this is the best product ever!”, you can enumerate the list of pros and cons of using the product, and tips on how to ensure success using it.
Customers appreciate honest and extensive reviews as these are what they truly need to make smart buying decisions.
While it’s true that you cannot possibly try all the products you’re promoting especially if there’s a lot, you can start with the first ones that you’ll promote. Also, it would be good to keep your affiliate products to a minimum so you can try as many of them as possible.
Moreover, try to get into a niche where you’re active so you can use these products because you also need them yourself.
For example, if you’re thinking of putting up a make money online affiliate blog, this would be a good idea if you’re also planning to set up online income streams aside from affiliate marketing. This way, you’ll most likely be using the web hosting providers that you want to promote as an affiliate product. You can then share your experiences using these with your affiliate customers.
# 3 – Verify the merchant’s reputation first
Do not get into any affiliate program without first doing a quick background check on the merchant who owns the product.
This is necessary even if you’ve managed to choose a reputable and legitimate affiliate program.
It’s possible that the program is legit but the merchant himself/herself has a shady background that you should be wary about.
For example, you find one merchant selling the best kinds of essential oil products. You’re interested in promoting these products. But you’ve found out during your research that this merchant is known for not paying his/her employees on time and not providing them with the benefits required by the law.
If your customers find out that you’re supporting this merchant, even if he/she has great quality products, you can’t stop them from thinking that you are supporting a business that abuses employees.
This is certainly not good for your online reputation.
As you know building customer trust is essential for any affiliate marketing business.
# 4 – Provide excellent customer service
Of course, it’s not just the product that matters but also how to treat your customers and handle doing business with them.
You need to provide the best possible customer service not to a few selected customers but to all the people who come to your website.
You never really know which one of these people is going to become your customer.
You need to treat all of them fairly.
The foundation of customer service lies on the following:
You need to be as efficient as possible when dealing with your customers. Of course, you need to stay on top of your business, and know everything about it. It’s also a must to be prompt with everything—from replying to your customer to dealing with their problems and so on. And you need to do all these with a smile on your face. This is even if you don’t communicate with your customers face to face. You must always be courteous, friendly and accommodating, even to the most annoying and problematic customers.
# 5 – Keep in touch with customers post sale
Another way to provide more value to your customers is to keep in touch with them after the sale has been made.
You don’t necessarily have to meet up with each of your customers for lunch or invite them to your kid’s birthday party.
But they’d surely appreciate it if you drop them a casual message asking them how they are, and asking them about the product they have bought from you. Let them know that you want to know if the product is able to satisfy their needs and expectations. Assure them that you are just a message away should there be any issue or problem.
Yes, troubleshooting the product should fall into the hands of the merchant but you need to connect them to the merchant when a problem arises, as you were also the one to connect the two to set up the purchase.
# 6 – Publish product demos and how to guides in your site
If you think that setting up an affiliate website is where your job ends as an affiliate marketer, think again.
Remember, as an affiliate, it’s not just the product you’re selling, but the whole package.
And this package includes knowledge, tips, advice, strategies and ideas that will make the product even more valuable and useful.
This is why, you need to publish product demonstrations and how to guides on your website so that your customers can easily learn how to use the product, how to use the product effectively and safely, and how to take care of it the best way possible.
You need to publish this type of content using different formats. For one, you need to have a text guide for the readers. Then there should also be video instructions and infographics for the visually inclined users. You might also want to consider publishing these in the form of podcasts, as there are also users who prefer to listen to instructions instead of read them or view them. This makes your website more accessible to more users.
# 7 – Organize webinars and tutorials
Aside from how to guides and product demos, you should also consider organizing webinars and online tutorials.
Just make sure that the topic is related to the product that you are promoting.
So for example, you have a make money online blog and you have registered with the Bluehost or WordPress affiliate programs, it would be wise to organize a webinar that teaches your customers the step by step procedure on how to set up an account with Bluehost or WordPress or a detailed online course on how to connect these two.
The more detailed and extensive the course or webinar is, the more value that you’ll able to provide to your customers.
# 8 – Answer questions of your customers
Customers usually have plenty of questions before they buy a product.
Some of the most common questions they have about a product include:
- Does it really work?
- Is it effective and durable?
- How long will it last?
- How much is it?
- How do I use it?
- How can I take care of it?
These are just a few of the generic questions that people ask before buying any product. Then there are many other questions that are specific to the product.
It would be smart to have an FAQ section about your products to answer the commonly asked generic questions.
Then for the specific questions, be sure to leave a contact information on your site, and if possible, install a live chat box so that your customers can send in their queries and you can answer these as fast you can.
The more immediately you reply, the bigger is the chance that the customer will buy the product.
# 9 – Address your customers problems and concerns
Even if you’ve managed to choose the right products and the right merchant to work with, it’s still possible for problems to occur.
After all, affiliate marketing is not a perfect system. Just like with any other business, it also has its own flaws.
This makes it important for you to be prepared for the problems that may possibly arise.
One thing to keep in mind is that you need to address your customer’s problems with the product right away.
By right away, we mean that right at that moment that you receive the complaint.
Whatever it is you’re doing, stop for a moment to reply to the complainant or answer the complaint if it was publicly posted on social media or any other online platform.
This is not only for the purpose of providing value to your customers but also to control the situation before it gets out of hand.
Keep in mind that one small complaint can spiral into something big that can inflict significant damage on your online reputation.
# 10 – Provide incentives to your loyal customers
One of the ways to build customer loyalty is by providing incentives to your regular customers.
Incentives are free gifts and special offers that offer so much value to your customers but should not be that expensive on your part.
You can give your loyal customers a free online course or a free ebook that will teach them the ways on how to use the product more efficiently.
Or you can give them an exclusive discount, a free sample, or a special try of a product before it is released in the market.
# 11 – Improve your site speed and navigation
Aside from the product and customer service, another aspect of your business that can help provide significant value to your customers is your affiliate website.
This is your business’s home base in the internet.
This is where your customers will go to find you and your products.
Obviously, it should be set up in such a way that your customers will have the best kind of user experience.
And for them to achieve that, your affiliate website should load quickly enough (not longer than five seconds) and should have efficient navigation system.
Make sure that there is a search box on your site that will enable your customers to easily find what they are looking for.
# 12 – Be accessible on all communication channels
Customers do not stay in one place online.
And this is why affiliates should be everywhere.
You should not only confine yourself to your website and only reply those who send messages using this channel.
You should also be active and present at other online channels such as email, social media sites and so on.
It’s also important to provide a working phone number so that in case your customers want to give you a call, they’ll know how to reach you.
It’s imperative to create an account on the top social media sites especially those where your customers can be found.
# 13 – Choose products that have the right price tag
Some affiliates over look this part. But it’s actually a must to check the selling price of the product before promoting it.
Determine if the price is ideal for your target customers.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Does the product have a reasonable price?
- Is it something that my target customers can afford?
- Does it provide good value for my customers’ money?
It’s not a good idea to go for products that are too cheap, as this might get your customers thinking that the product is not high quality. At the same time, you shouldn’t choose one that’s overly expensive as your target customers might find it difficult to afford the product. Choose products that come with the right price tag.
# 14 – Personalize your approach
Customers appreciate it whenever business owners take the time to communicate with them personally.
It makes them valued, and they feel special.
Affiliates are often advised to personalize their communication with their customers.
Whether it’s sending an email message or replying to a social media comment, you should talk to your customers just like how you talk to your friends.
This will make it easier for you to build a connection with them, which can then foster a lasting relationship with your customers.
Always remember that it’s easier to get a regular customer to buy a product than to find a new customer to buy your product for the first time.
# 15 – Use the “under expect, over deliver” method
This technique is often employed by business owners.
This does not necessarily give more value to customers but only the illusion of it.
You set the expectations of your customers lower than what they should really expect so that you have an allowance for delay or mistakes, and when you deliver as you should, the customers would appreciate it more.
Here’s a good example: you can tell your customers that their products will arrive around three to five days, when in fact, the merchant will send them the product the next day, which means it will arrive within two days.
When they expect the three to five day time frame, this gives you an allowance in case there is any shipping problem or delay. When it does arrive within two days, the customer will think that it arrived earlier than it should and would appreciate the promptness of your transactions.
Giving value to your customers whom you should value greatly will surely help you succeed as an affiliate marketer. Consider all these tips and strategies for your affiliate marketing business.